ADVENT REFLECTION DAY 15
Gaudette Rejoice in the Lord always, again I say, Rejoice!
‘………..my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour.’
Elizabeth & Mary: Two women who have cause for rejoicing.
Let us contemplate what happened when these two women met. Scripture gives us an account of their meeting and records their greetings to each other. Let us stay with them and hear what else they have to say.
Elizabeth is an older woman who has been longing and praying for a child for many years, while bearing the shame of being childless. What has life been like for her among her relations and neighbours?
Now she rejoices that God has listened to her prayer. She has told her friends and neighbours, and they too have rejoiced with her and thanked God, deepening their faith in the God who listens to our prayer and loves us. Luke, in his Gospel tells us that when Mary arrived at her door, Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and was inspired to know that Mary was carrying in her womb the Saviour of the world.
Mary, a younger woman is concerned since she is unmarried and is now with child. God has ‘favoured her’ but what does this mean for her among her family and friends and neighbours? In the society of her time, she is in danger of death by stoning. How can she explain this to Joseph, and what about everyone else, the rest of the family and the neighbours? How would they handle this unlikely story of a young woman who had a visit from an angel with a message from God?
And yet, amidst all this uncertainty and concern Mary is able to say ‘My soul glorifies the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour.
Let us be with this for a while and listen to their conversation.
Let us pray:
Let us pray for all childless couples that they may be blessed in other ways and know the goodness of God.
Let us pray for all expectant mothers. We pray especially for unmarried women with unwanted pregnancies; those who are stressed and tempted with abortion; those who have been told that their unborn child is disabled or ill in any way.
We pray that Our Lady and St. Elizabeth will be with these women in their pregnancies, helping them to trust in God who never fails those who love him. May he give them give them a safe and happy delivery and the courage they need to care for their children.
Today’s reflection comes from one who could ‘guide’ you anywhere in her youth, now she’s not such a long way from Tipperary!